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WHO & Ministry of Ayush Sign New Agreement to Advance TCI

Written by : Nikita Saha

November 20, 2023

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Additionally, the Ministry, in collaboration with the WHO, will also develop an International Herbal Pharmacopoeia focusing on herbs found in Southeast Asia.

The Ministry of Ayush and the World Health Organisation (WHO) signed the 'Project Collaboration Agreement' to boost the development of new traditional, complementary, and integrative medicine (TCI).

The primary objective of this agreement is to standardise Traditional and Complementary Medical Systems, incorporating their quality and safety aspects into the National Health System, and disseminating these practices on an international scale.

Further, the multi-million five-year agreement will play a crucial role in achieving the objective of elevating Traditional and Complementary Medical Systems within the national health framework.

Additionally, the Ministry, in collaboration with the WHO, will also develop an International Herbal Pharmacopoeia focusing on herbs found in Southeast Asia.

On the partnership, Dr Bruce Aylward, assistant director-general of the Universal Health Coverage and Life Course Division of WHO, said “This collaboration will play an important role not only in the globalization of evidence-informed traditional, complementary, and integrative medicine but also in mainstreaming proven TCI practices in national health systems towards achieving universal health coverage and well-being,”

This marks the third collaboration between the Ministry of Ayush and the WHO, with previous agreements signed in 2016 and 2017 focusing on taking Traditional Medical systems like Yoga, Ayurveda, Unani, and Panchakarma to the global level and strengthening the Ayurveda, Unani, and Siddha medical systems, respectively.

Through this new agreement, the Government of India will continue to support WHO in developing benchmarks for training and practice in Siddha, training modules on the quality and safety of herbal medicines, among other activities over the next five years for the advancement of traditional medicine.

Expressing her views, Indra Mani Pandey, permanent representative of India to the United Nations and other International Organizations in Geneva, while signing the agreement stated, “... signing of this agreement will not only support the development of the TCI Global Strategy - but it will also support the integration of evidence-based Traditional and Complementary Medicine in national health systems, bio-diversity conservation and the sustainability of medicinal plants. India is committed to working with WHO to strengthen Traditional Medicine Systems globally and especially in supporting fellow developing countries in promoting their own traditional medicine systems”.

In June this year, the AYUSH Ministry unveiled AI in traditional medicine with the guidance and support of UN agencies and a comprehensive IT backbone for traditional medicine known as the "AYUSH Grid", for an integrative holistic healthcare model of service delivery.


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